State marijuana authorities have been prohibited from issuing recreational marijuana licenses in Brooklyn and four other New York regions by a federal judge in Syracuse.
The American decision on Thursday Variscite, a Michigan-based cannabis store, sued New York when the state denied its application, and District Judge Gary Sharpe was appointed as a result.
As long as the lawsuit continues, the state Office of Cannabis Management cannot grant conditional adult-use retail dispensary licenses to businesses in Brooklyn, the Finger Lakes, Central New York, Western New York, and Mid-Hudson.
In its case, Variscite claims that the Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary license, a program implemented in July, violates the constitutional provisions that safeguard intrastate commerce.
Applicants must demonstrate that they or a family member has a marijuana-related conviction in New York, that they have strong ties to the Empire States, and that they have at least two years of experience managing a profitable business.
The Michigan company claims that because Kenneth Gay, the owner, was convicted of a marijuana-related misdemeanor in his home state, he was not eligible for an early license.
By prioritizing minority-owned businesses in low-income, primarily Black and Brown neighborhoods, which have historically bore the burden of strict drug laws; the conditional licensing program aims to promote fairness in New York’s expanding marijuana market.